According to a member of the ships company we spoke to, HMS Queen Elizabeth is likely to sail on Monday.

We had originally believed that the vessel was to sail on Sunday but new information has come to light.

This has not been confirmed officially by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance and readers intending to see the ship should note that the bridges over the Forth will be closed to the public as the vessel departs.

A member of the ships company we spoke to told the UK Defence Journal that the potential for a delay until Monday was because “the weather forecast for the weekend isn’t great”.

Unfortunately, that delay has now happened due to the relatively poor weather expected on Sunday.

“Today at the clear lower deck the ship’s company were briefed that the ship will sail on Monday weather permitting and we still have a few trials that need to be achieved before we can go all of which should be complete by Sunday allowing a sail time of around lunch time Monday.”

Defence secretary Michael Fallon said about the earlier slip in sea trials from Spring to Summer:

“It has always been our intention that Queen Elizabeth should be accepted into the Royal Navy before the end of this year. We are not giving specific dates as to when the sea trials are likely to commence.”


It is understood that this minor delay is ‘not outside the tolerance’ of the programme.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Bloke down the pub

So a sailing time of around lunchtime Monday means slack water at low tide, does this sound right? I recall seeing somewhere that she would moor up above the bridges after exiting the docks until the tide had changed. I had assumed that was to allow maximum depth of water for leaving the dock and then maximum air draught for getting under the bridges, but if the time given is for leaving the dock rather than sailing past Queensferry then it’s the opposite.


I’d read the same as you, high tide to get out of the dock and low tide to get maximum air draught under the bridge. That doesn’t seem to tally at all with a lunch time departure, unless they mean hitting the open sea (i.e. getting clear of the bridge) around lunch time which would make sense and tie in with the 11:23 low tide. I also can’t see them wanting to go for the 23:29 low tide to get under the bridge. I would have thought they would want full daylight for that tricky bit so if it is… Read more »

Bloke down the pub

In addition, I expect they would prefer to steam against the flow of the tide in order to reduce the speed over the ground.

Nick Bowman

Nice one!


Yes Julian,provided she doesn’t hit the bridge and make the news for all wrong reasons.


Just as well they are keeping the times quiet and the reasons for the delay or ‘Social Media’ will be full of ever-so-knowledgeable people reporting: “Supercarrier can’t sail in bad weather!”

Sometimes its best to keep schtumm, just crack on and then tell people afterwards. Although I am not sure how you hide a 72,000 ton Supercarrier from view …


Agreed, the main media publicity for HMS Queen Elizabeth was the naming event where the Queen all the big wigs etc were present.
Trials were always going to be a bit more low key.